Author Topic: How smart phones are destroying a generation  (Read 8113 times)

CargoBiker

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Re: How smart phones are destroying a generation
« Reply #50 on: August 10, 2017, 08:34:41 PM »
My wife has worked at a daycare for 10 years, and says that the 4 and 5 year olds she have now, have zero imagination.  None.  They don't even know how to play with toys. 

She says that our 2-year-old is leaps and bounds above them in this area (she gets close to zero screen time).


It's just really sad.
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Re: How smart phones are destroying a generation
« Reply #51 on: August 10, 2017, 09:49:01 PM »
My wife has worked at a daycare for 10 years, and says that the 4 and 5 year olds she have now, have zero imagination.  None.  They don't even know how to play with toys.

I don't mean to defend smartphones -I'm one of those people who tense up when people bring them out at IRL gatherings. But, I saw this phenomenon once -in a place that had never had internet, electronics, etc.

My sense of that situation was that the children lacked imagination (and it was frightening, yes) as a result of trauma. I think there can be many sources of trauma, including general overwhelm, separation, etc, which I think our culture is prone to even without smart devices.

Is anyone else here a fan of the work of Mate and Neufeld? I think many people interested in the topics of personal electronics, parenting, children's communities, and cultures would enjoy it.

LonerMatt

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Re: How smart phones are destroying a generation
« Reply #52 on: August 11, 2017, 02:02:24 AM »
A few quick thoughts, sorry these are contentious.

1. As a High School teacher I will almost never use technology in the classroom. The way text on screen changes reading habits, for example, is incredibly detrimental to successful and deep learning. Be incredibly wary of any school pushing technology - there is likely little debate inside the school about the value of technology in education (it's largely non-existent for a few reasons). Paper works a lot better for almost every task (research, coding and a few other niche skills excepted)

2. In these sorts of debates some people are bound to talk about how one just needs to be smarter than the technology (usually they'll use words like 'aware' or 'conscious' or 'in control'). This point ignores something incredibly significant: social media (and some games) have increasingly been engineered by people who design gambling machines, psychologists studying addictive behaviours and other experts who know more about how your brain works than you do.

In an economy that increasingly commodifies attention (the more time spent in-app the more $ they make through advertising) it's incredibly misinformed to think that being 'more aware' of technology's affects is a realistic strategy. Problem gamblers realise there is a problem sometimes and can't stop, how many people have said they hate spending as much time on FB, IG, SnapChat? It's not weak willpower, it's habits formed, strengthened and manipulated by engineering specifically made to increase people's use of those apps.

Primarily you've got a lot of brains and money being spent to capture, retain and manipulate your attention by people who do not know you and do not love you.

3. Social Media and information is an incredibly chilling topic. Outrage gains the most attention time, so we live in a media space where it's increasingly exaggerated in order to foster outrage and get that time spent on article metric up. We've all seen how media and information are warped by social media and it should worry us.

Have people worried about old technology people. Yes. Have those people had a point? Almost always. Look at how automation is killing people's jobs - the luddites had a point, even if they were misguided. Look at how a 24/7 news cycle and sound-bite driven media strategies have become increasingly problematic. Critics of TV had a point.

Things progress, change is constant, there are genuinely problems with all media. Media changes us, even if we (falsely) believe we are in control. If you've got a hammer, everything looks like a nail. If you've got a smartphone everything looks like a quick-look, skim-read, captivating but shallow, gamified piece of shit.

4. Parents of boys, in particular. Misogyny is terrible, and a lot of dating apps (which teens are increasingly using) don't make matter better. Reducing interaction to a 'hit it or quit it' swipe left or swipe right interaction with someone who is still forming norms with those they are attracted to can be incredibly damaging. Girls are constantly pressured to share nude images, put out and are shamed if they don't.

Men pressuring women for sex is a constant problem in our world - some of the ways people are using their phones are changing the way they view women (just like porn changes the way we view sex, and therefore sexual partners).
« Last Edit: August 11, 2017, 02:08:39 AM by LonerMatt »
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Re: How smart phones are destroying a generation
« Reply #53 on: August 11, 2017, 02:28:13 AM »
Every generation has a thing that their parents think is ruining them. It's just means you're old ;)
Here is the phone-specific part.

Exactly.  TV, rock-and-roll, video games, etc. were going to ruin everything and doom society.  Smart phones are just the latest thing to lay blame on.

Maybe TV & video games did ruin things, and now it's only getting worse? I don't see how that comparison is proving anything.

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Re: How smart phones are destroying a generation
« Reply #54 on: August 11, 2017, 04:30:52 AM »
My wife has worked at a daycare for 10 years, and says that the 4 and 5 year olds she have now, have zero imagination.  None.  They don't even know how to play with toys. 

She says that our 2-year-old is leaps and bounds above them in this area (she gets close to zero screen time).


It's just really sad.
Lots of good stuff on this thread. I'm still digesting, but the above stuck out to me. I have two boys 8 and 4. We limit screens a good bit. Always have. Despite that, my oldest has zero imagination and doesn't really play with toys. My youngest can get lost for HOURS playing on his own with all kinds of toys and things. I really think it just depends on the kid and their personality. I will admit that we did play with my oldest too much, so that may have contributed to it.

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Re: How smart phones are destroying a generation
« Reply #55 on: August 11, 2017, 06:50:18 AM »
Posting to follow this disturbing thread about an important topic. My experience with trying to rein in adolescent boys' tech use is that it is a completely confounding task. My boys have become utterly addicted to their phones and laptops, to the point where, when wifi was unavailable at his Dad's place, one son moved out to a friend's place. Oh, and video games. We found That if we forbade, or even limited, them at home, the kids would never be home, but instead go to other places to play (and I don't know what else is going on in those places). It seems to be their primary means of interaction with friends. And guess what? They bring those fucking game consoles to college. And if your kid doesn't, you can bet one of his roommates will. It is hours upon hours of their daily life energy spent. I believe this really is something new under the sun.

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Re: How smart phones are destroying a generation
« Reply #56 on: August 11, 2017, 07:16:34 AM »
Posting to follow this disturbing thread about an important topic. My experience with trying to rein in adolescent boys' tech use is that it is a completely confounding task. My boys have become utterly addicted to their phones and laptops, to the point where, when wifi was unavailable at his Dad's place, one son moved out to a friend's place. Oh, and video games. We found That if we forbade, or even limited, them at home, the kids would never be home, but instead go to other places to play (and I don't know what else is going on in those places). It seems to be their primary means of interaction with friends. And guess what? They bring those fucking game consoles to college. And if your kid doesn't, you can bet one of his roommates will. It is hours upon hours of their daily life energy spent. I believe this really is something new under the sun.

Do you think there was a point at which you could have put your foot down and headed things off at the pass, so to speak? I ask as a mom of 3 whose oldest is 10. I mean, obviously you've got to let go once they're in college but in hindsight, do you see a point at which you might have changed things by not buying a cell phone or gaming console?

I am not judging at all but I am really shocked at what you wrote (and I see that there is obviously a divorce involved, which complicates things). My immediate reaction is that if my kids were trying to circumvent my rules by relocating to a friends' house, I'd take away their car.  But I fully acknowledge that the most confident experts on parenting are those who've never had kids (i.e. I haven't walked in your shoes yet so I'm talking out of my ass).

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Re: How smart phones are destroying a generation
« Reply #57 on: August 11, 2017, 08:11:29 AM »
I enjoyed this article: http://project-based-homeschooling.com/camp-creek-blog/sliver-or-how-stop-fighting-about-screen-time

tl;dr:
"Many parents approach the subject of screen time — or other kid activities they don’t like, like reading comic books — by placing a strong limit on it. They say to their child, “We want our lives to be lovely and full of all the good things, so we are cramming all the stuff you love that we don’t like into this sliver.”
"Then the parents get to experience the ever-burgeoning frustration of having their child riveted on that sliver of time. The kids want to talk about it. They want to bargain for more of it. They want to argue about whether they got their fair share of it. Why? Because the sliver is where all the good stuff is.

What we need to do is flip it around."
"We say, “We want our lives to be lovely and full of all the good things, so we are going to allot a portion of our day to the stuff that really matters — the stuff we think is important.”"

*****************
Read it, she makes some good points. Then again, this coming from a mom of 4 boys, the oldest of whom is only 5, so definitely not judging here, those with older kids probably know a lot more about this than me.

So I tried her idea out yesterday. I got some super fun entertaining things that I approve of and that I know my kids would find interesting (blocks of lumber of different sizes). Instead of competing with the screens, like screens=bad, free play=good, I just left them strewn about.

They've been playing with those blocks constantly. They still watch tv and play with their tablet, but they independently choose to do this other activity. Not because I said they must, but because it is also good in its own right.

So (again, take with a grain of salt, I am not dealing with teens here), maybe the takeaway is that make your life fun enough that kids WANT to be a part of it?
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Re: How smart phones are destroying a generation
« Reply #58 on: August 11, 2017, 08:49:00 AM »
Posting to follow this disturbing thread about an important topic. My experience with trying to rein in adolescent boys' tech use is that it is a completely confounding task. My boys have become utterly addicted to their phones and laptops, to the point where, when wifi was unavailable at his Dad's place, one son moved out to a friend's place. Oh, and video games. We found That if we forbade, or even limited, them at home, the kids would never be home, but instead go to other places to play (and I don't know what else is going on in those places). It seems to be their primary means of interaction with friends. And guess what? They bring those fucking game consoles to college. And if your kid doesn't, you can bet one of his roommates will. It is hours upon hours of their daily life energy spent. I believe this really is something new under the sun.

Do you think there was a point at which you could have put your foot down and headed things off at the pass, so to speak? I ask as a mom of 3 whose oldest is 10. I mean, obviously you've got to let go once they're in college but in hindsight, do you see a point at which you might have changed things by not buying a cell phone or gaming console?

I am not judging at all but I am really shocked at what you wrote (and I see that there is obviously a divorce involved, which complicates things). My immediate reaction is that if my kids were trying to circumvent my rules by relocating to a friends' house, I'd take away their car.  But I fully acknowledge that the most confident experts on parenting are those who've never had kids (i.e. I haven't walked in your shoes yet so I'm talking out of my ass).

I honestly cannot see a way we could have stopped it. We live in a rural/exurban area, so playdates are often fairly distant and overnights common. We are pretty crunchy folks who, because we hate the ads, had no TV in either house (still have no cable); our kids both went to crunchy private schools where nature time was valued and screen activities were not forbidden, but not a big part of the curriculum. I was absolutely blindsided by the fact that when our kids went to hang with their friends, those families' leisure was very centered around screens, and that quickly became established for my kids as "normal." Once smartphones were in the picture (believe me, we resisted as long as we could), kids were texting, FBing, Snapchatting, etc. When a bit older, Tinder is a thing, at least for older kid. God knows what else. Older kid at one point even found some of those dark commerce sites like Silk Road, as well as some very intense and scary right-wing propaganda forums. I think I would be naive if I did not assume porn were in the mix -- at least, exposure to it.

I did not have 16 hours a day to police 100% of my kids' activities, and that is literally what it would have taken. And I would have been actively resisted at every turn, which is/was a losing battle both for my sanity and for the unity of our family. Their dad is an excellent person (amicable divorce) but 10 years older than I am and even less technologically inclined, though he did manage ultimately to put his wifi on a timer so limits would happen even without parental presence. But of course the kids know how to plug in their laptops when no one is standing over them. Now the older kid has serious attention issues that I believe are not necessarily caused but certainly exacerbated by the technology. Younger is doing better at self-regulating, plus he's a college athlete who HAS to spend analog time practicing and playing. But he and his teammate roomies? Playstation, baby. I do not believe he's read more than one or two physical books since high school. College textbooks are mostly available in electronic form.

All I know how to do, at this point, is make them pay for their own tech toys and subscriptions and set a good example of being a person who does real things in the real world, and try to include them in that as much as they will tolerate.

I would be lying if I said that technology isn't at least somewhat addictive for me and for my ex as well, even if it expresses itself as participation in this forum. And as WhiteTrashCash said, it doesn't help my state of mind.

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Re: How smart phones are destroying a generation
« Reply #59 on: August 11, 2017, 10:02:05 AM »
But I fully acknowledge that the most confident experts on parenting are those who've never had kids (i.e. I haven't walked in your shoes yet so I'm talking out of my ass).
So, speaking as a non-parent here, but recent-enough teenager (graduated high school in 2009, 26 years old), trying to provide the teenager's perspective, without giving explicit parenting advice:

My wife has worked at a daycare for 10 years, and says that the 4 and 5 year olds she have now, have zero imagination.  None.  They don't even know how to play with toys. 

She says that our 2-year-old is leaps and bounds above them in this area (she gets close to zero screen time).


It's just really sad.
Lots of good stuff on this thread. I'm still digesting, but the above stuck out to me. I have two boys 8 and 4. We limit screens a good bit. Always have. Despite that, my oldest has zero imagination and doesn't really play with toys. My youngest can get lost for HOURS playing on his own with all kinds of toys and things. I really think it just depends on the kid and their personality. I will admit that we did play with my oldest too much, so that may have contributed to it.
I was never one to play that much with toys as a kid (baffled my parents a bit, they said later), and I never had cable at home, didn't play video games in any capacity until I was 11, didn't have real internet access until I was about 13, didn't have my own computer (and therefore pretty private internet usage) until 16, didn't have a cell phone of any kind until 18, and didn't have a smartphone until 20.  I don't think technology was why I wasn't playing with toys when I was <10.  My "imagination" has always had more of an internal manifestation than external.  I was the kid that drew circuit diagrams of my grandpa's attic in kindergarten when other kids would draw rabbits and shit.  I hated coloring in elementary school.  The only technology I had been exposed to at that time were even-ancient-at-the-time Apple IIs in the computer lab at my elementary school, where we once typed some things that we printed on dot-matrix printers.

Posting to follow this disturbing thread about an important topic. My experience with trying to rein in adolescent boys' tech use is that it is a completely confounding task. My boys have become utterly addicted to their phones and laptops, to the point where, when wifi was unavailable at his Dad's place, one son moved out to a friend's place. Oh, and video games. We found That if we forbade, or even limited, them at home, the kids would never be home, but instead go to other places to play (and I don't know what else is going on in those places). It seems to be their primary means of interaction with friends. And guess what? They bring those fucking game consoles to college. And if your kid doesn't, you can bet one of his roommates will. It is hours upon hours of their daily life energy spent. I believe this really is something new under the sun.
Teenagers are stubborn.  Teenagers are very stubborn.  I was a stubborn teenager (and now I'm a slightly-less-stubborn adult).  You tell them they can't do something they want to do, of course they're going to figure out a way to do it anyway if they really want it that much.  They're smart.  (This goes back to my other post about resourceful teens finding loopholes in restricted school-issued tablets/laptops.)  But their prefrontal cortex isn't 100% developed just yet so abstract reasons (like "It's bad for you") don't mean much to them.  They'll understand when they're older, but telling them that probably sounds demeaning to their ears, because teenagers think they know everything already.

And there's way worse than gaming consoles in college.

Do you think there was a point at which you could have put your foot down and headed things off at the pass, so to speak? I ask as a mom of 3 whose oldest is 10. I mean, obviously you've got to let go once they're in college but in hindsight, do you see a point at which you might have changed things by not buying a cell phone or gaming console?

I am not judging at all but I am really shocked at what you wrote (and I see that there is obviously a divorce involved, which complicates things). My immediate reaction is that if my kids were trying to circumvent my rules by relocating to a friends' house, I'd take away their car. 
I didn't have a cell phone until 18, but things wouldn't have changed much for me as far as video games go.  I almost always bought them with my own money (so used last-generation console and games), which meant very few games until I started working at 14.  If I had $20, I could buy one game, and it had to be a really good one that would be worth it.  (In fact, in 2013 I sold off a bunch of my old N64 games I bought around that time, and nearly all of them actually *appreciated* in value because I only bought good, still-sought-after-now games.  The other games I bought later and was therefore a bit more slapdash about, did not have that result.)  Games were what first made me into a "saver."  Why would I spend $1 on a candy bar when not buying 20 candy bars meant I could buy a video game that would provide hundreds of hours of value over many years?  This also bothered my mom, because she couldn't ever get me to want to buy new clothes, even in high school when I was working.  I'd much rather wear last year's clothes and have money leftover (this remains true to my adult life, and has extended with time to include 5-7 year old clothes).  I thought it was a waste.  But video games "were a waste of money" to her.  I got scolded for saving up $350 to buy a Wii and two games when it came out in 2006, but if I had blown $50/mo on clothes over the previous seven months, she would have been happy with that.  Parents tend to have different values than their teenagers.  You can't force them.

I enjoyed this article: http://project-based-homeschooling.com/camp-creek-blog/sliver-or-how-stop-fighting-about-screen-time

tl;dr:
"Many parents approach the subject of screen time — or other kid activities they don’t like, like reading comic books — by placing a strong limit on it. They say to their child, “We want our lives to be lovely and full of all the good things, so we are cramming all the stuff you love that we don’t like into this sliver.”
"Then the parents get to experience the ever-burgeoning frustration of having their child riveted on that sliver of time. The kids want to talk about it. They want to bargain for more of it. They want to argue about whether they got their fair share of it. Why? Because the sliver is where all the good stuff is.

What we need to do is flip it around."
"We say, “We want our lives to be lovely and full of all the good things, so we are going to allot a portion of our day to the stuff that really matters — the stuff we think is important.”"

*****************
Read it, she makes some good points. Then again, this coming from a mom of 4 boys, the oldest of whom is only 5, so definitely not judging here, those with older kids probably know a lot more about this than me.

So I tried her idea out yesterday. I got some super fun entertaining things that I approve of and that I know my kids would find interesting (blocks of lumber of different sizes). Instead of competing with the screens, like screens=bad, free play=good, I just left them strewn about.

They've been playing with those blocks constantly. They still watch tv and play with their tablet, but they independently choose to do this other activity. Not because I said they must, but because it is also good in its own right.

So (again, take with a grain of salt, I am not dealing with teens here), maybe the takeaway is that make your life fun enough that kids WANT to be a part of it?
I really like this idea.  Now that I think of it, this sort of thing was always the best way to "get me away from the video games/computer/whatever."  Make me actively want to do something else, and I will.  They would also praise and encourage me when they saw me doing something they wanted me to do more of (whether it was playing the piano, or checking out 30 dinosaur books at a time from the library in third grade and reading them nonstop).


Again, not speaking as a parent, but just trying to provide the recentish-teenager perspective on some things, and mentioning my own interaction with technology, and what "worked" or didn't with me.

My main personal frustration with "Kids These Days" and technology is that they know their ways around tablets and smartphones, but the median computer skill level seems to be on the decline.  I work in IT at a service lab, and we can no longer count on 22-year-old new hires to always be "very tech-savvy."  It seems like the demographic with the highest median computer-savviness-level right now is ages 25-45.
« Last Edit: August 11, 2017, 10:05:20 AM by ketchup »

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Re: How smart phones are destroying a generation
« Reply #60 on: August 11, 2017, 11:45:07 AM »
I enjoyed this article: http://project-based-homeschooling.com/camp-creek-blog/sliver-or-how-stop-fighting-about-screen-time

tl;dr:
"Many parents approach the subject of screen time — or other kid activities they don’t like, like reading comic books — by placing a strong limit on it. They say to their child, “We want our lives to be lovely and full of all the good things, so we are cramming all the stuff you love that we don’t like into this sliver.”
"Then the parents get to experience the ever-burgeoning frustration of having their child riveted on that sliver of time. The kids want to talk about it. They want to bargain for more of it. They want to argue about whether they got their fair share of it. Why? Because the sliver is where all the good stuff is.

What we need to do is flip it around."
"We say, “We want our lives to be lovely and full of all the good things, so we are going to allot a portion of our day to the stuff that really matters — the stuff we think is important.”"

*****************
Read it, she makes some good points. Then again, this coming from a mom of 4 boys, the oldest of whom is only 5, so definitely not judging here, those with older kids probably know a lot more about this than me.

So I tried her idea out yesterday. I got some super fun entertaining things that I approve of and that I know my kids would find interesting (blocks of lumber of different sizes). Instead of competing with the screens, like screens=bad, free play=good, I just left them strewn about.

They've been playing with those blocks constantly. They still watch tv and play with their tablet, but they independently choose to do this other activity. Not because I said they must, but because it is also good in its own right.

So (again, take with a grain of salt, I am not dealing with teens here), maybe the takeaway is that make your life fun enough that kids WANT to be a part of it?

You'll need to come back in a month or two and report on how easy this was to keep up! I like the idea, but my experience (I have 4, 9, and 12 year old boys) is that this sort of thing is fantastic for a day or two, but they quickly become bored, want something else "new" and/or it's really tiring having to constantly come up with stuff to attract them. I don't like the need to compete with electronics. Also, the older they get, the more they whine. We pull them out to hike and do other things as family all the time, but, good god, every so often we pitch the idea just because of how painful it is to interest them in anything other than the computer.

I notice the older my kids get, the less they use their toys, and the more fierce the competition. We have been homeschooling over multiple moves, and are finally putting the older two back in school this fall. I know keeping my 4 year old playing and creating away from screens will be easy. His brothers, though, I only expect that to get much harder.

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Re: How smart phones are destroying a generation
« Reply #61 on: August 13, 2017, 06:20:34 AM »
1. As a High School teacher I will almost never use technology in the classroom. The way text on screen changes reading habits, for example, is incredibly detrimental to successful and deep learning. Be incredibly wary of any school pushing technology - there is likely little debate inside the school about the value of technology in education (it's largely non-existent for a few reasons). Paper works a lot better for almost every task (research, coding and a few other niche skills excepted)

Kids generally don't like using their tech in the classroom either. Because you are taking their devices they use for "fun" and making them use it for "learning".
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Re: How smart phones are destroying a generation
« Reply #62 on: August 13, 2017, 06:22:49 AM »
Lots of good stuff on this thread. I'm still digesting, but the above stuck out to me. I have two boys 8 and 4. We limit screens a good bit. Always have. Despite that, my oldest has zero imagination and doesn't really play with toys. My youngest can get lost for HOURS playing on his own with all kinds of toys and things. I really think it just depends on the kid and their personality. I will admit that we did play with my oldest too much, so that may have contributed to it.

She's not talking about a couple of individual kids and their personalities.  This a trend she has observed across her classroom over a 10-year period.

Also not saying it's just the tech.  But it's an easy go to theory to point to, that makes logical sense.
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Re: How smart phones are destroying a generation
« Reply #63 on: August 13, 2017, 06:26:17 AM »
So (again, take with a grain of salt, I am not dealing with teens here), maybe the takeaway is that make your life fun enough that kids WANT to be a part of it?

This is my approach.

If the kid wants to use a device, I always say No and then come up with something that's also awesome, and she's over it in 10 seconds.
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Re: How smart phones are destroying a generation
« Reply #64 on: August 13, 2017, 12:26:56 PM »
Lots of good stuff on this thread. I'm still digesting, but the above stuck out to me. I have two boys 8 and 4. We limit screens a good bit. Always have. Despite that, my oldest has zero imagination and doesn't really play with toys. My youngest can get lost for HOURS playing on his own with all kinds of toys and things. I really think it just depends on the kid and their personality. I will admit that we did play with my oldest too much, so that may have contributed to it.

She's not talking about a couple of individual kids and their personalities.  This a trend she has observed across her classroom over a 10-year period.

Also not saying it's just the tech.  But it's an easy go to theory to point to, that makes logical sense.

It also corresponds with the financial crash. Perhaps overwhelmed and stressed-out parents has something to do with it. And it also corresponds to a new post 9-11 world, where helicopter parenting has exploded.



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caracarn

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Re: How smart phones are destroying a generation
« Reply #65 on: August 14, 2017, 11:24:49 AM »
1. As a High School teacher I will almost never use technology in the classroom. The way text on screen changes reading habits, for example, is incredibly detrimental to successful and deep learning. Be incredibly wary of any school pushing technology - there is likely little debate inside the school about the value of technology in education (it's largely non-existent for a few reasons). Paper works a lot better for almost every task (research, coding and a few other niche skills excepted)

Kids generally don't like using their tech in the classroom either. Because you are taking their devices they use for "fun" and making them use it for "learning".
Our school district requires they use tech in the classroom.  They are not using their own devices, they are school supplied tablets or laptops but they are used every day in each subject/classroom all day long.

WhiteTrashCash

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Re: How smart phones are destroying a generation
« Reply #66 on: August 14, 2017, 12:16:05 PM »
1. As a High School teacher I will almost never use technology in the classroom. The way text on screen changes reading habits, for example, is incredibly detrimental to successful and deep learning. Be incredibly wary of any school pushing technology - there is likely little debate inside the school about the value of technology in education (it's largely non-existent for a few reasons). Paper works a lot better for almost every task (research, coding and a few other niche skills excepted)

Kids generally don't like using their tech in the classroom either. Because you are taking their devices they use for "fun" and making them use it for "learning".
Our school district requires they use tech in the classroom.  They are not using their own devices, they are school supplied tablets or laptops but they are used every day in each subject/classroom all day long.

Our local school district does the same thing with technology in the classroom (all "free" Google services) plus they fired all the school librarians and replaced them with a Google content search. There was an uproar from families about this, but they stuck with their plan so children in our school district will no longer have any guidance in determining the difference between good and bad sources of information.

Just further evidence that the people are no longer in control of anything and information is being controlled by massive corporations.

Hargrove

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Re: How smart phones are destroying a generation
« Reply #67 on: August 15, 2017, 04:15:17 PM »
We hang out in communities that highly value: being together, getting into nature, etc. So, for us, those are the norm, and a device is just a tool to facilitate that or experience respite in relation to that.

Bingo.

If the device is a tool, you use a tool until you don't need it for the task anymore. Many parents don't know how to enforce its use as a tool, and kids quickly learn it can be a separate virtual reality, then aren't necessarily stopped from engaging with it.

Social media can be a weapon or a logbook of cat pictures, but it is a place of purely voluntary sharing - one's skill in determining what to share, and one's ability to share in various ways, can determine reputation battles, feelings of guilt or pride, feelings of fury and fear, and it may not be possible to opt out, as caracarn's family tragically learned, which some people find a terrifying new development because of scope. Literally any disagreement can become a political battle fueled by the impersonal nature of the internet, and literally any event can be turned into one seen by everyone you know.

I think the people saying this is just "old people overreacting" have missed the point I think Joon's post makes here: the only preventive for the dangers of mistaking the tool for the purposes it was intended to facilitate is an entire culture supportive of putting the thing down, and most of us don't have that yet.

But with lots of open discussion about it, we can certainly tilt back in that direction. Along those lines, I agree with most of the parents trying to at least make it so in their own homes.

Quote from: LonerMatt
Have people worried about old technology people. Yes. Have those people had a point? Almost always. Look at how automation is killing people's jobs - the luddites had a point, even if they were misguided. Look at how a 24/7 news cycle and sound-bite driven media strategies have become increasingly problematic. Critics of TV had a point.

Awesome. People who invented broadcast television talked about a new perfect era of shared information and enlightenment, as if humanity would have been perfect but didn't have mass communication options to get it sorted yet. How much sillier with the internet. Hopefully the experience of, say, almost ever going to a chatroom will cure future generations of this insanity. Cultural values that can't be reinforced (positively and/or negatively) don't tend to stick around, and once the conversation changes from the value of the culture to the value of the technology that spreads it, the change becomes much more pronounced for good and for bad.

Quote
Things progress, change is constant, there are genuinely problems with all media. Media changes us, even if we (falsely) believe we are in control. If you've got a hammer, everything looks like a nail. If you've got a smartphone everything looks like a quick-look, skim-read, captivating but shallow, gamified piece of shit.

That's hilarious.
« Last Edit: August 15, 2017, 04:24:51 PM by Hargrove »

BuffaloStache

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Re: How smart phones are destroying a generation
« Reply #68 on: August 23, 2017, 09:23:09 PM »
...
My main personal frustration with "Kids These Days" and technology is that they know their ways around tablets and smartphones, but the median computer skill level seems to be on the decline.  I work in IT at a service lab, and we can no longer count on 22-year-old new hires to always be "very tech-savvy."  It seems like the demographic with the highest median computer-savviness-level right now is ages 25-45.

I find this very interesting- when you are talking about computer savviness, do you mean coding, or general skills like Excel use or something? Just curious
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ketchup

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Re: How smart phones are destroying a generation
« Reply #69 on: August 24, 2017, 09:18:55 AM »
...
My main personal frustration with "Kids These Days" and technology is that they know their ways around tablets and smartphones, but the median computer skill level seems to be on the decline.  I work in IT at a service lab, and we can no longer count on 22-year-old new hires to always be "very tech-savvy."  It seems like the demographic with the highest median computer-savviness-level right now is ages 25-45.

I find this very interesting- when you are talking about computer savviness, do you mean coding, or general skills like Excel use or something? Just curious
I just mean general business computer skills.  I also realized it wasn't clear in my initial post, but I work in IT for this lab, and the new hires I'm talking about are chemists, not IT people.  I've had more than one 22-year-old new hire refer to the desktop of the computer as the "home screen."  Some don't really have a concept of files and folders (those don't really exist on a tablet/smartphone), so if I say "And then we'd save that kind of file in this folder on the H: drive." sometimes it takes a bit for them to know what the hell I'm talking about.

Also, I'm only 26, so these "kids" aren't really that much younger than I am.  I think I caught the tail end of intuitive computer savviness (smartphones exploded in popularity right after I finished high school).

shawndoggy

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Re: How smart phones are destroying a generation
« Reply #70 on: August 24, 2017, 11:58:36 AM »
Some don't really have a concept of files and folders (those don't really exist on a tablet/smartphone), so if I say "And then we'd save that kind of file in this folder on the H: drive." sometimes it takes a bit for them to know what the hell I'm talking about.

This came up with my son when we were considering taking his laptop in for service.  I asked whether he'd backed it up and he said "I don't have anything saved on it."  So I ask "where's all your stuff?"  His quite reasonable explanation was that as a child of the internet, all of this stuff is on google drive, which he finds vastly more convenient because it's "there" on any computer he uses.

I could totally see him fitting into a bright and high achieving young group that's kinda ignorant about how data is stored on closed networks.

ketchup

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Re: How smart phones are destroying a generation
« Reply #71 on: August 24, 2017, 12:03:26 PM »
Some don't really have a concept of files and folders (those don't really exist on a tablet/smartphone), so if I say "And then we'd save that kind of file in this folder on the H: drive." sometimes it takes a bit for them to know what the hell I'm talking about.

This came up with my son when we were considering taking his laptop in for service.  I asked whether he'd backed it up and he said "I don't have anything saved on it."  So I ask "where's all your stuff?"  His quite reasonable explanation was that as a child of the internet, all of this stuff is on google drive, which he finds vastly more convenient because it's "there" on any computer he uses.

I could totally see him fitting into a bright and high achieving young group that's kinda ignorant about how data is stored on closed networks.
That's exactly the sort of things that I'm talking about.  The tech geek kids will always know the technical stuff, but the normal kids don't have to anymore, and are happy being an extra layer abstracted from the nuts and bolts of it all, so the median tech-savviness goes down.

shawndoggy

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Re: How smart phones are destroying a generation
« Reply #72 on: August 24, 2017, 12:08:32 PM »
That's exactly the sort of things that I'm talking about.  The tech geek kids will always know the technical stuff, but the normal kids don't have to anymore, and are happy being an extra layer abstracted from the nuts and bolts of it all, so the median tech-savviness goes down.

I'm meh on this point.  I mean the same could be said about adjusting your car's timing or rebuilding a carb... something that most reasonably handy guy could do 40 years ago.  Or maybe it was shoeing a horse before that.

But network hierarchies and how to use a timing light are still things that most people can learn pretty quickly if they want to.


ketchup

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Re: How smart phones are destroying a generation
« Reply #73 on: August 24, 2017, 12:11:19 PM »
That's exactly the sort of things that I'm talking about.  The tech geek kids will always know the technical stuff, but the normal kids don't have to anymore, and are happy being an extra layer abstracted from the nuts and bolts of it all, so the median tech-savviness goes down.

I'm meh on this point.  I mean the same could be said about adjusting your car's timing or rebuilding a carb... something that most reasonably handy guy could do 40 years ago.  Or maybe it was shoeing a horse before that.

But network hierarchies and how to use a timing light are still things that most people can learn pretty quickly if they want to.
Oh I agree, and I'm definitely not saying it's a net societal negative. It just makes my particular job less easy. :)

BuffaloStache

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Re: How smart phones are destroying a generation
« Reply #74 on: August 25, 2017, 09:24:58 AM »
Oh I agree, and I'm definitely not saying it's a net societal negative. It just makes my particular job less easy. :)

It's all good Ketchup- seems like you have a humongous head start on your FI journey, so you'll be out of the workforce extremely quicker than most and won't have to deal with this for too long. Then, if/when you have your own kids you can teach them the ins and outs of computers and make sure they really shine :-D


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WhiteTrashCash

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Re: How smart phones are destroying a generation
« Reply #75 on: August 25, 2017, 10:31:41 PM »
That's exactly the sort of things that I'm talking about.  The tech geek kids will always know the technical stuff, but the normal kids don't have to anymore, and are happy being an extra layer abstracted from the nuts and bolts of it all, so the median tech-savviness goes down.

I'm meh on this point.  I mean the same could be said about adjusting your car's timing or rebuilding a carb... something that most reasonably handy guy could do 40 years ago.  Or maybe it was shoeing a horse before that.

But network hierarchies and how to use a timing light are still things that most people can learn pretty quickly if they want to.
Oh I agree, and I'm definitely not saying it's a net societal negative. It just makes my particular job less easy. :)

I'm pretty sure that all of this is what led to people paying $12 for pre-made avocado toast.

frugledoc

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Re: How smart phones are destroying a generation
« Reply #76 on: August 27, 2017, 02:34:37 AM »
Social media is the problem rather than smartphones.

A whole generation growing up seeing everybody on social media living perfect lives. 

Happiness = expectation - reality  ...  the expectation is too high when you only see everybody elses lives presented in a perfect light.

I also think modern parenting is more a problem than smart phones. A lot of kids are extremely mollycoddled these days right up to adulthood and do not have to learn how to be independent.

Kids with even weakly Mustachian parents are unlikely to have that problem.

I think the article is mostly garbage to be honest.
« Last Edit: August 27, 2017, 02:38:54 AM by frugledoc »

chaskavitch

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Re: How smart phones are destroying a generation
« Reply #77 on: August 27, 2017, 07:47:41 AM »
That's exactly the sort of things that I'm talking about.  The tech geek kids will always know the technical stuff, but the normal kids don't have to anymore, and are happy being an extra layer abstracted from the nuts and bolts of it all, so the median tech-savviness goes down.

I'm meh on this point.  I mean the same could be said about adjusting your car's timing or rebuilding a carb... something that most reasonably handy guy could do 40 years ago.  Or maybe it was shoeing a horse before that.

But network hierarchies and how to use a timing light are still things that most people can learn pretty quickly if they want to.
Oh I agree, and I'm definitely not saying it's a net societal negative. It just makes my particular job less easy. :)

I'm pretty sure that all of this is what led to people paying $12 for pre-made avocado toast.

Unrelated to smartphones, but I went to brunch for a baby shower yesterday, and there was actual avocado toast on the menu.  Avocado toast with an egg, $16.  I laughed, and no one I was with understood why :'(

trollwithamustache

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Re: How smart phones are destroying a generation
« Reply #78 on: September 06, 2017, 09:23:55 AM »
Social media is the problem rather than smartphones.

A whole generation growing up seeing everybody on social media living perfect lives. 

Happiness = expectation - reality  ...  the expectation is too high when you only see everybody elses lives presented in a perfect light.

I also think modern parenting is more a problem than smart phones. A lot of kids are extremely mollycoddled these days right up to adulthood and do not have to learn how to be independent.

Kids with even weakly Mustachian parents are unlikely to have that problem.

I think the article is mostly garbage to be honest.

How is social media different than all those TV perfect families in the 70s and 80s?

I crashed into this parenting game hot as a step parent... Mom was big on limiting the phones and they wanted more phone time. While she talked about them growing up and learning to do more on their own, it was really hard for Mom to not do stuff for them like fold the laundry, clear the dishes from the table ect.

They certainly were not allowed to walk or bike unsupervised very far from the house for a long time. So yeah, they texted their friend who lived 5 blocks away because neither set of parents would allow the dangerous journey.  Heck the 10 year old wasn't allowed to make the 3 block walk to school alone.


caracarn

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Re: How smart phones are destroying a generation
« Reply #79 on: September 06, 2017, 11:44:54 AM »
Social media is the problem rather than smartphones.

A whole generation growing up seeing everybody on social media living perfect lives. 

Happiness = expectation - reality  ...  the expectation is too high when you only see everybody elses lives presented in a perfect light.

I also think modern parenting is more a problem than smart phones. A lot of kids are extremely mollycoddled these days right up to adulthood and do not have to learn how to be independent.

Kids with even weakly Mustachian parents are unlikely to have that problem.

I think the article is mostly garbage to be honest.

How is social media different than all those TV perfect families in the 70s and 80s?

I crashed into this parenting game hot as a step parent... Mom was big on limiting the phones and they wanted more phone time. While she talked about them growing up and learning to do more on their own, it was really hard for Mom to not do stuff for them like fold the laundry, clear the dishes from the table ect.

They certainly were not allowed to walk or bike unsupervised very far from the house for a long time. So yeah, they texted their friend who lived 5 blocks away because neither set of parents would allow the dangerous journey.  Heck the 10 year old wasn't allowed to make the 3 block walk to school alone.
Since you are talking about in the past tense, I'm assuming you are not in that situation any more?

With regards to the last paragraph, as parents who have tried to foster more of that independent spirit that never killed us, a big problem is people will call the police and tell them there is an unsupervised child out and about and then you have child services on your doorstep.  I used to bike 5 miles ones way to the public library in a busy big city suburb when I was 8 years old.  If I told an 8 year old to do that now I'd be in jail.  It's not always totally controllable by the parent.

Michael in ABQ

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Re: How smart phones are destroying a generation
« Reply #80 on: September 06, 2017, 12:08:41 PM »
Posting to follow this disturbing thread about an important topic. My experience with trying to rein in adolescent boys' tech use is that it is a completely confounding task. My boys have become utterly addicted to their phones and laptops, to the point where, when wifi was unavailable at his Dad's place, one son moved out to a friend's place. Oh, and video games. We found That if we forbade, or even limited, them at home, the kids would never be home, but instead go to other places to play (and I don't know what else is going on in those places). It seems to be their primary means of interaction with friends. And guess what? They bring those fucking game consoles to college. And if your kid doesn't, you can bet one of his roommates will. It is hours upon hours of their daily life energy spent. I believe this really is something new under the sun.

I'm listening to an audiobook that mentions this topic and they quoted some statistics that average boys were playing something like a year (maybe more) of video games by the time they graduated high school. I.e. enough hours every day to add up to a full year. Considering 1/3 of your life is spent sleeping that means roughly 1/12 of their waking hours were spent playing videogames, or about three hours every day starting at age 6 or so.

I have to say I spent many, many hours playing computer games as a teenager and in college. However, aside from an occasional 5-10 minutes playing something quick on my phone I've probably only spent a few tens of hours playing any sort of video games in the last decade since graduating college. Having a baby on the way and needing to find a full time job after I graduated to support my new wife pretty much put an end to childish pursuits like playing video games.

Michael in ABQ

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Re: How smart phones are destroying a generation
« Reply #81 on: September 06, 2017, 12:24:40 PM »
I enjoyed this article: http://project-based-homeschooling.com/camp-creek-blog/sliver-or-how-stop-fighting-about-screen-time

tl;dr:
"Many parents approach the subject of screen time — or other kid activities they don’t like, like reading comic books — by placing a strong limit on it. They say to their child, “We want our lives to be lovely and full of all the good things, so we are cramming all the stuff you love that we don’t like into this sliver.”
"Then the parents get to experience the ever-burgeoning frustration of having their child riveted on that sliver of time. The kids want to talk about it. They want to bargain for more of it. They want to argue about whether they got their fair share of it. Why? Because the sliver is where all the good stuff is.

What we need to do is flip it around."
"We say, “We want our lives to be lovely and full of all the good things, so we are going to allot a portion of our day to the stuff that really matters — the stuff we think is important.”"

*****************
Read it, she makes some good points. Then again, this coming from a mom of 4 boys, the oldest of whom is only 5, so definitely not judging here, those with older kids probably know a lot more about this than me.

So I tried her idea out yesterday. I got some super fun entertaining things that I approve of and that I know my kids would find interesting (blocks of lumber of different sizes). Instead of competing with the screens, like screens=bad, free play=good, I just left them strewn about.

They've been playing with those blocks constantly. They still watch tv and play with their tablet, but they independently choose to do this other activity. Not because I said they must, but because it is also good in its own right.

So (again, take with a grain of salt, I am not dealing with teens here), maybe the takeaway is that make your life fun enough that kids WANT to be a part of it?

You'll need to come back in a month or two and report on how easy this was to keep up! I like the idea, but my experience (I have 4, 9, and 12 year old boys) is that this sort of thing is fantastic for a day or two, but they quickly become bored, want something else "new" and/or it's really tiring having to constantly come up with stuff to attract them. I don't like the need to compete with electronics. Also, the older they get, the more they whine. We pull them out to hike and do other things as family all the time, but, good god, every so often we pitch the idea just because of how painful it is to interest them in anything other than the computer.

I notice the older my kids get, the less they use their toys, and the more fierce the competition. We have been homeschooling over multiple moves, and are finally putting the older two back in school this fall. I know keeping my 4 year old playing and creating away from screens will be easy. His brothers, though, I only expect that to get much harder.

I have four boys with the oldest three ranging from 6 to 9. Those three are all homeschool with the two other kids still too young. Inevitably our older boys always drift back to playing with Legos and playing in the backyard. Their usual backyard play involves creating battles with various leaves from different plants substituting for soldiers and tanks and airplanes. They do have some plastic army men as well that they sometimes use. Also, matchbox/hot wheels cars. They have no screens except an old Vtech tablet type device that frankly doesn't gets very little use (only has a few games/activities). Each day we rotate through who gets to pick the one episode of TV they'll pick from Netflix (Star Wars: Clone Wars has been the standby for most of them for the last year or two). The oldest two can read now and spend a lot of time reading my old collection of Calvin and Hobbes plus piles of books I read as a kid. We did get our oldest a little MP3 player that I loaded some audiobooks on (Treasure Island plus a few other classics that are in the public domain) as well as some classical music. So far he doesn't use it a whole lot but hearing good books read properly should help impart what good writing sounds like. My boys are aware of other kids having smart phones but haven't really expressed a desire to have their own. Whenever the topic comes up we simply tell them that they can buy a phone when they turn 16.

A quick anecdote. We had a bring your kids to work day at my office recently. One of my co-workers had a little girl of probably 5 or 6 that was in a group I was supervising for an activity. She seemed bright and good natured. Another adult asked her what her favorite toy was and she responded "my iPad" when questioned further she said she watched YouTube videos on it. I felt bad for her that she was already being sucked into this passive activity instead of doing something active.

jooniFLORisploo

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Re: How smart phones are destroying a generation
« Reply #82 on: September 06, 2017, 01:04:05 PM »
Quote
...a big problem is people will call the police and tell them there is an unsupervised child out and about and then you have child services on your doorstep.

Yep. It's not always the parent who is stifling/helicoptering the kids. Rather, we're simply navigating this bizarre, modern-day threat. It's perplexing, vague, confusing, and complex. I have a great time trying to explain the matter of "required supervision" to my kid, and how the laws (in our area) don't define it concretely, yet a family can be deeply affected by the perspective of an uninvolved person.

trollwithamustache

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Re: How smart phones are destroying a generation
« Reply #83 on: September 06, 2017, 01:23:38 PM »


With regards to the last paragraph, as parents who have tried to foster more of that independent spirit that never killed us, a big problem is people will call the police and tell them there is an unsupervised child out and about and then you have child services on your doorstep.  I used to bike 5 miles ones way to the public library in a busy big city suburb when I was 8 years old.  If I told an 8 year old to do that now I'd be in jail.  It's not always totally controllable by the parent.
[/quote]

Older with no claim to wiser.

Yeah now I really appreciate  the Child Protective Services argument. People Freak the F out when I thought the kids should walk to the library and pick out their books on their own. (I mean we make them read every day, so they should pick the books right?)   The school didn't allow them to leave without an adult pick until 6th grade I believe.  Giving the kid money and letting him get in line at the grocery store to buy his gum can get some disapproving looks even if you are there 10 feet away so they are "doing it all on their own".   100%  some lady will let you know her disapproval over either the candy/gum or the unattended-ness.  And living in a not big city, I didn't want to let them bike, I just wanted to let them walk places on the sidewalk!

Anyways not to argue that this is right or wrong, but its the way it is. I recall walking home every day after school and there was certainly lots of socializing on the school yard and the walk home with other kids on similar routes.  That just isn't allowed anymore so what do the kids do? well they all want to text.  It seems like they did less of this during sports seasons when they were seeing friends and socializing before/after more. But, a lot of time, the phone is the only social outlet we as society give the poor kids. The oldest is tired of his brother being a brat, all he can to do to talk to someone else is hide in the room texting whatever buddy complaining about the same thing. 

Alas, no solutions here.



LiveLean

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Re: How smart phones are destroying a generation
« Reply #84 on: September 06, 2017, 01:59:12 PM »
OP here....I just finished Jean Twenge's book iGen. Some interesting points -- and she backs everything up with a lot of research; she's a psychology professor at San Diego State.

For starters, kids today average six hours of screen time a day. That's all screens. That's a staggering figure. Those of us Gen Xers might have watched a lot of (bad) TV in the'70s and '80s and played a lot of Atari 2600, but we were not looking at screens six hours a day, every day.

Kids get their driver's licenses at 16 in far lower numbers and spend much more time at home than previous generations. On a positive note, they're drinking less and having less sex in high school than in previous generations. On the downside, they head to college woefully unprepared to do anything. Few have held a job or managed money. (I'm paraphrasing her conclusions.)

One point she hammers home constantly is that the No.1 priority for iGen (born between 1995 and 2012) is the need to feel safe. That's because from birth they've had helicopter parents, micromanaged schedules, car seats, play dates, etc. They've lived in a world where parents accompany them to bus stops and they''re literally never out of sight of an adult. Many prefer at 16, 17, and 18 to be driven around rather than drive. Because of this, they still crave safety. Twenge notes that this is the least likely generation to start businesses. They'll take the safe route - a job with an employer.

They're also turning out to be the most Libertarian generation ever. They're pro-choice, pro-gay marriage, pro-marijuana, but also pro-gun. Their bottom line is that it's all about the individual -- like millennials, they've always been told they're special and social media has amplified this -- and the individual should always have the right do to what s/he wants, so long as it doesn't hurt anyone, and that the government should get the hell out of the way.

After reading Twenge's arguments, you definitely could see the Libertarian party gaining traction or another third party emerging.

Fascinating reading all around.
 
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caracarn

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Re: How smart phones are destroying a generation
« Reply #85 on: September 06, 2017, 03:00:00 PM »


With regards to the last paragraph, as parents who have tried to foster more of that independent spirit that never killed us, a big problem is people will call the police and tell them there is an unsupervised child out and about and then you have child services on your doorstep.  I used to bike 5 miles ones way to the public library in a busy big city suburb when I was 8 years old.  If I told an 8 year old to do that now I'd be in jail.  It's not always totally controllable by the parent.

Older with no claim to wiser.

Yeah now I really appreciate  the Child Protective Services argument. People Freak the F out when I thought the kids should walk to the library and pick out their books on their own. (I mean we make them read every day, so they should pick the books right?)   The school didn't allow them to leave without an adult pick until 6th grade I believe.  Giving the kid money and letting him get in line at the grocery store to buy his gum can get some disapproving looks even if you are there 10 feet away so they are "doing it all on their own".   100%  some lady will let you know her disapproval over either the candy/gum or the unattended-ness.  And living in a not big city, I didn't want to let them bike, I just wanted to let them walk places on the sidewalk!

Anyways not to argue that this is right or wrong, but its the way it is. I recall walking home every day after school and there was certainly lots of socializing on the school yard and the walk home with other kids on similar routes.  That just isn't allowed anymore so what do the kids do? well they all want to text.  It seems like they did less of this during sports seasons when they were seeing friends and socializing before/after more. But, a lot of time, the phone is the only social outlet we as society give the poor kids. The oldest is tired of his brother being a brat, all he can to do to talk to someone else is hide in the room texting whatever buddy complaining about the same thing. 

Alas, no solutions here.
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Oh, I have no problem saying it's wrong.  We'll be living with the consequences for decades as it keep getting more wrong to the point that none of us ever leave our house because all the stores will be closed because everything will be delivered by Amazon/Whole Foods and all our entertainment will be virtual reality so we will never have to get off the recliner.

jooniFLORisploo

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Re: How smart phones are destroying a generation
« Reply #86 on: September 06, 2017, 03:18:42 PM »
Sure, it's "wrong" in the sense that there are negative ramifications of society's move toward insularity, but I agree with trollwithamustache that it "is what it is." i.e., This is part of the reality we live in. And we're not wrong to decline to subject our kids to the effects of silly "protection" polices. Sucks that they can't necessarily "get away with" hanging out outdoors without a caregiver nearby, but there remain heaps of opportunities (e.g., multigenerational community with outdoor games, etc).

The good news is that Mustachians (and others) are creative, aware people who will find strategies for balance. Although my kid uses screens, I'm tickled at the balance we're living, and besides being psyched about electronics and very adept with them, he's a warm, friendly, capable, involved person. Screens don't take that away, because so many hours of every week he's actively engaged in live community.

BuffaloStache

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Re: How smart phones are destroying a generation
« Reply #87 on: September 07, 2017, 06:22:47 AM »
Sure, it's "wrong" in the sense that there are negative ramifications of society's move toward insularity, but I agree with trollwithamustache that it "is what it is." i.e., This is part of the reality we live in. And we're not wrong to decline to subject our kids to the effects of silly "protection" polices. Sucks that they can't necessarily "get away with" hanging out outdoors without a caregiver nearby, but there remain heaps of opportunities (e.g., multigenerational community with outdoor games, etc).

The good news is that Mustachians (and others) are creative, aware people who will find strategies for balance. Although my kid uses screens, I'm tickled at the balance we're living, and besides being psyched about electronics and very adept with them, he's a warm, friendly, capable, involved person. Screens don't take that away, because so many hours of every week he's actively engaged in live community.

What good "live community" events are you using? I think part of the argument that everyone is making is that the opportunities for "live community" are seemingly scarce in modern society- especially opportunities that culture an independent mindset.
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jooniFLORisploo

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Re: How smart phones are destroying a generation
« Reply #88 on: September 07, 2017, 08:45:39 AM »
Quote
What good "live community" events are you using? I think part of the argument that everyone is making is that the opportunities for "live community" are seemingly scarce in modern society- especially opportunities that culture an independent mindset.

Individually or together we make or join:

*humanist groups
*board game meetups
*music jams
*meditation circles
*singing groups
*potlucks
*multigenerational parties
*homeschool groups
*spiritual communities
*Parks and Rec activities (family days, all-ages courses)
*any community event the city puts on
*maker groups
*hiking groups
*family camps

We use Meetup.com, community bulletin boards, community calenders, and the parks and rec guides to find people, every time someone invites us to play we say yes and follow through, we talk to the people around us in lineups and on busses, I bring my kid to my college classes once in a while and to any activities at which they'll allow kids... We go WWOOFing locally together.

He's allowed to use electronics at home, and generally not at any of the above.

Even in a big city, we find some of the same people at each, so the relationship starts to build.

Note that I don't seek "an independent mindset"; I value interdependence. When my kid goes to an activity without me, he's connecting with others. When he goes with me, we hang out together some of the time but intentionally take space from each other and mingle, each eating and playing with others of any age before meeting back up toward the end.

Society seems to be moving toward insularity within an individual or a nuclear family, but those of us on this forum know we don't need to do what most people are doing, on any count.

Hargrove

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Re: How smart phones are destroying a generation
« Reply #89 on: September 07, 2017, 03:21:58 PM »
I think the opportunities for "live community" are probably significantly improved. Only in movies about the 1950s is every tiny town in America (or where ever bucolic small towns are sold) about to throw a festival.

What has changed is expectations and opportunities to zone out, be it out of the news you don't like, or the community, or even the room or conversation.

Many parents feel like they can't say "I don't have any time to take Junior to violin lessons," despite the fact that Junior is extremely unlikely to be a concert violinist. They usually DO feel like they can say "I would love to go to your generic social development gathering, but I don't have time." This, despite the fact that Junior will need social skills in... all the time.

Both could translate to "that's really not a high enough priority for me to worry about" or "I don't think that's very important." Social inclusion is still treated by many as something that kind of gets taken care of on its own, which is exactly how it stops getting taken care of.